Friday, February 26, 2010

Fetal Doppler


It works beautifully, and it's the greatest feeling to be able to lay in bed, put the doppler on my belly and listen to my baby's heart beating away. What a relief to have this tool at home!!! I think this could be the end of my paranoia. Hurray!! (I'm sure my doctor will be please about this too...hopefully no more "freak out" appointments!!)

Baby's heart rate was 166 bpm this afternoon same as it was on Wednesday at my appointment with Dr. F. I could listen to this sound ALL day ... it's my new favorite song!!!

"Whoop, whoop, whoop, whoop, whoop, whoop".... I'm so addicted!!!!!!!

If you are considering getting a doppler....DO IT!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

I panicked and called my OB!

I was feeling so confident and happy after my 14 week appointment, then as time ticked by anxiety set in. I haven't felt a single flutter in many days...I know this is normal, but it still makes me worry. I have also lost 5 pounds which seems really odd now that I'm this far along. To top off my freakout I had a horrible nightmare that my baby died. Yesterday I reached my breaking point and decided to call my OB with a little nudge from a friend of mine. She helped me realize that that's what my doctor is for and he shouldn't have a problem with helping to calm my nerves. I also feel like being anxious is the wrong environment for a growing baby so I made the call!

I AM SO GLAD I DID!! The receptionist was extremely understanding and offered to have my doctor call me as soon as he could. He did just a hour or so later...from his cell phone...and was so welcoming and sensitive. He said, "Ohh...I don't want you upset!! Why don't you come in tomorrow morning and we'll take a little look! Okay?" I was so happy to have his support and not feel blown off the way I have so many times in the past by my RE.

So this morning I showed up 15 minutes early and expected a long wait since I didn't have an appointment and was being "sqeezed" in. They called me back in less than 5 minutes. I was so surprised!! Then the nurse who took me back to the room was so friendly and compassionate. She told me how she felt the same way with her first baby and that I shouldn't feel foolish at all for coming in for a "mind calming" visit. Then she told me that the doc was going to do an ultrasound so I could see the baby with my own eyes! I was stunned! I was sure he would only use a doppler for a few seconds just to prove to me that there was still a heartbeat and then send me on my way. Nope, he was going all out for this paranoid mama!!! How nice is that!?!?!?!

He instantly located the heartbeat and I literally felt a huge weight lifted off my worried mind as I took a big sigh of relief. I'm not sure how I got so worked up with worry that there was something wrong with my baby, but seeing that little heart pump was the best feeling EVER. Since I start week 17 tomorrow he told me that he would be able to tell me the gender for sure by now. Since Ben wasn't with me I told him that I wanted to know, but not until my husband could find out at the same time. Dr. F suggested that since he was recording the sonogram on DVD (yes, he doubled checked that this time it was actually working) that he write "boy" or "girl" on the screen while I look away and then Ben and I could watch the DVD together later. I loved the idea and told him to go for it! It turns out that the umbilical cord was running right between Baby's legs, so once again he couldn't determine the sex no matter how hard he tried. This baby really doesn't want us to know it's secret!! Ha!! Oh well...we have our anatomy scan in 3.5 weeks so hopefully then we will finally learn if we are having a son or a daughter. Dr. F did get a shot of my baby sucking its thumb though! This picture totally melts my heart!!!
Boy or doesn't matter! Our baby is healthy and that is all we want!! He told me that the HB was 166bpm and that Baby was meauring 4.5 inches from head to it's little bottom (that doesn't count the legs.) So we have a perfectly healthy babe. My doc used these exact words, "Everything looks awesome!" Ahhh....sweet relief!!

I also ordered a fetal doppler yesterday from Ama.zon. I figured that if I could listen to the HB at home whenever I want then I will probably not freak out as easily anymore. Based on the reviews the doppler got, it seems like it will work great. I'll update when it arrives!

Ps. I nominated some of my bloggy friends for an award yesterday (I wish I could have nominated so many more of you wonderful ladies) so if you missed that post please be sure to go check it out!! Love you guys!! XOX

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

All of YOU Make My Day!!!

My blog was awarded as one that makes someone's day!!! Thank you Wifey for this very sweet blogger award!! It truly made my day!! Wifey is a fantastic blogger who is finally expecting her first miracle baby after 2+ years of TTC...stop by and congratulate her if you have a few moments.

10 things that make my day (in no particular order):

1. Personal mail! It's the best feeling ever to open my mailbox and have a card or letter that someone handwrote ME! It's so special to get "real mail" anymore. I try to send notes here and there to make others' days too. I need to get better at it!!

2. Email, Facebook, Instant Messages and Phone calls! Even though I get a lot more of these than snail-mail it still makes my day. When my blackberry makes its alert sounds I still get a littel jolt of excitement. I love hearing from my friends!

3. A Sunny Day! There is nothing like a perfect matter the season. A hot day in summer by the pool, a spring day with the birds chearping and the flowers blooming, a sunny winter day with snow gleaming, or a bright fall day with rustly leaves. All four seasons can make my day!

4. Nice people! Making eye contact and getting a smile, a door held for you, or having someone say, "after you" all make my day. It just nice to be reminded that some people out there are aware of others and go out of their ways to be polite and pleasant. I always try to remember to do the same even if I am having a bad reason to bring others down with me by being gloomy.

5. A closet full of clean clothes! There's nothing like the day after laundry day when every piece of clothing you own is clean, hung up and ready to go. You can wear whatever you want!

6. Reading that someone in blogger-IF world got a BFP!!!! We are all hoping for miracles, so I'm always thrilled when they actually happen for one of us!!

7. No lines at the grocery store!! Isn't it great when you can cruise your cart right in the lane and start unloading immediately?!? It doesn't always happen, but when it does I feel special and it makes my day!!

8. Every night when my husband gets home from work!! After 5 years together I STILL get excited to see him each and every evening. I love watching our dogs greet him too. They have no problem showing their they haven't seen him in weeks. It's a wonderful daily reminder of all the love we have in our home.

9. Going out to dinner! I like to cook so my husband and I usually stay in, but when we go out it makes my day to still have a clean kitchen with no dishes when we get home!!

10. Getting comments from my bloggy friends. It is the best feeling ever to know that there are people out there who are reading my blog and writing breif comments to lend support or show interest in me. Thank you!!

I nominate the following bloggers (in no particular order) who all make my day on a regular basis. Thank you have no idea how much your words mean to me!!!! (Sorry I can't nominate ALL the blogs I read.)

1. Tracey at Creating Baby Johnson is in her 13th week of pregnancy after toughing it through 5 IVF cycles. She is the strongest chick I know!! I couldn't be happier for her!!

2. Sonja On (In)Fertile Ground is about to start her 18th week with her quadruplet pregnancy. She and her 4 babies are living proof that embryos don't have to be perfect quality for a miracle (or 4 in her case) to happen. All are healthy and happy and I pray that they stay that way through the rest of her pregnancy and beyond.

3. Below Average Athlete Just got her first BFP after a FET!!! I am THRILLED for this West Coast Mama!!!
4. Emily at A hope and a wish for a gift from a petri dish is in her 8th week and pregnant with twins after a FET. She is feeling morning sickness in full force and facing a move this weekend! I'm rooting for ya Emily!!

5. Jem at Ambivalent Womb has been through a lot of loss these days. I have shed tears with her and I pray that the sun will shine for her soon!

6. One Who Understands is just starting her first IVF-ICSI cycle and I am really cheering for her!! Come on BFP!!

7. Babygaga is only two days ahead of me with her pregnancy. She is now starting her 17th week. It's been fun to follow her!

8. Brooke at Scifibaby just got at BFP after a FET. She has had so much faith and patience as I've been following her. She is really inspiring!

9. Rachel at Our Journey, But Not Our Plan has been through the ringer with TTC. She is now exploring adoption. Her strength is remarkable!

10. Lin at Our Someday Family is proof that miracle babies are possible. She got her BFP just days before starting IVF #1 for MFI. It's been fun following her throughout her pregnancy so far.

11. Sabine at A Land Far Away (She was already nominated by Wifey so I figured it would be ok if I listed 11 bloggers.) Sabine is about to turn 30 and is looking for 30 ideas of things to do this year that she's never done before. It's her "30 for 30" list! If you have a good idea please go let her know!!

Now it's your turn to List 10 Things That Make Your Day and then list 10 Blogs that you think are worthy of this award.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

For all you DOGS out there...

This morning I was staying in bed taking it easy since I over did yesterday and I'm feeling it now. Huge blogging nerd that I am, I grabbed my laptop as soon as I woke up to see what was going on out in cyber space. I checked my email, some news, Olympic updates, and of course my friends blog entries. As I typed a comment to a fellow blogger it occurred to me that my left hand was heavy and not working very well. This is what I saw! Look who love's me:
It's my Jack Russell, BUNNY!!! Of course, with my right hand, I grabbed my blackberry to take this picture. She is always cuddled up with me, but for some reason, this morning it caught my attention. The love of dogs is unlike anything else. (Yes, I'm a dog person, but I'm sure cat people feel the same way about their kitties!)

A canine's loyalty and affection is the most comforting thing ever! This little pup has been with us for most of our infertility journey...well, we got her several months after we learned it was going to be a long, hard road. She was our first baby, really. We raised her together since she was 9 weeks old. It has given us an outlet to express some parental love and nurturing. Even though she's just a puppy, it was something to hold and love while we've waited.

So this morning while she lovingly rested her sleepy head on my hand I was reminded of all the times she loved me when I needed it most. She never said the wrong things like, "just try to stress about it," or "at least you are still young." She let me feel whatever I wanted to feel, and she never judged me for a moment. She didn't try to solve my problems, and she never grew tired of me. She was the perfect companion in those dark hours.

So this post is goes out to all the dogs (and cats) who are helping us along the way. Your love is priceless!!

Thank you Puppies!!!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Belly Pics & Weekly Quiz

This is so fun!! I LOVE being pregnant and watching my belly grow!! I am so grateful for this gift.

5th Week (My Baseline Figure)

15th Week!

I got the following quiz from some fellow bloggers and decided I would join in the fun by answering the questions once a week. Here goes...

How far along: 15th week. I have never been happier!!!

Total Weight Gain: 6 lbs...Looks like a lot more to me, but I'm not complaining!! :)

Symptoms: Nothing bad. I've been very lucky. I am hungrier these days and I get out of breath a lot easier than I used to but that's not a big deal. I had some back pain from weeks 7-9 but that has gone away completely. Overall I have been feeling great this whole time. All smiles here!

Maternity Clothes: Absolutely!! In the pictures above, I'm wearing yoga pants and a t-shirt...the only clothes I used to wear that still fit me. I would never go out in public wearing these now, so I've made the switch to maternity pants and tops. They are very comfortable much more flattering.

Stretch Marks: Nope...I've started using lotion on my belly every day to keep the skin supple. I hope that I never get them!! We'll see......

Sleep: I sleep very, very well. (Except I get up to pee about 3-4 times a night, but this can't be helped.) I've moved a body pillow into our bed which really helps keep my knees comfortable. In all honesty, I feel that I should never complain about my comfort at night since Ben and I purchased a Tempurpedic mattress a couple years ago. They really are as amazing as the advertisements say they are. It was worth every penny!! After owning the bed for over two years I still look forward to crawling into it each night. Ok, now that I am starting to sound like those commercials I'll move on to the next question.

Best Moment Last Week: Our 14 week ultrasound!! Watching the baby move around and listening to the heartbeat is so incredible. I am so in love with our baby already!!

Movement: YES!! Only a few times here and there for the last couple weeks but they are unmistakable baby flutters. The best way I can describe it is this: Imagine the feeling you get when your eyelid starts twitching involuntarily. Well that's what it felt like to me when I first felt it. I thought my uterus was twitching involuntarily and then it hit me!! "That's my baby moving....the uterus doesn't twitch like that on its own!!!!" Since I've never felt anything like it before, I knew exactly what I was feeling!! Similar to gas pains? Yeah right!!! They are completely different!! And WONDERFUL. It makes me smile all day after I get that sensation. I love it!!

Food Cravings: Whole grapefruits...I love to peel them and eat each piece individually! Also PB&J sandwiches with a big glass of milk. I find this one weird cause I used to never like them...even when I was a kid. And the next one many of you will think is totally weird, but it is actually something I did eat when I was a child...Cream cheese and pickle sandwiches....haha....yum!! My cravings have been all over the board....these are just a few recent ones I can think of. We'll see what I'll be putting together next week!

What I miss: GOOD Wine!! I have always enjoyed cocktail hour, so skipping that is one thing I really do miss. But it’s totally worth it. I'll just appreciate a great glass of wine that much more when baby comes!!

What am I looking forward to: Our next ultrasound...of course!! Every glimpse I get of our baby is magic to me!! Our next one is March 19th (I'll be in my 20th week) so I have some waiting to do....

Milestones: I'm not affraid all the time!! Ever since our last appointment when we got confirmation that we made it through the first trimester with flying colors I have been able to relax a bit. I am gaining more and more confidence that things will be ok. I'm learning to trust that this pregnancy is strong and that we can believe that we are finally 'normal.' I'm ENJOYING my pregnancy instead of being paranoid!!

How is Daddy? Just as excited as I am. He is very protective of me and our baby. He won't let me do things like shovel snow and is always asking what he can get for me. He is also eager to learn the gender, but he's much more patient than I am. I couldn't have asked for a better husband...I know he will be an amazing father!!

That's it for now...thanks for reading!! :)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

14 Week Ultrasound w/ new OB

Today was sweet and sour...but mostly SWEET!! I'll start with the good stuff...

We met with our new obstetrician, Dr. F, who was kind and gentle, and instantly made me feel at ease. In fact, when I think about it, I was more relaxed with him today than I EVER was with my RE. Not that being in stirrups is a thing that gets me all panicked, cause lord only knows how many times I've been in them since the beginning of all this. It’s just that having someone in your nether regions isn't all relaxing like when you're getting your hair shampooed at the salon. It will always be somewhat uncomfortable no matter what, but today, with my new doc, it was much easier on me. He just moved slower and was more gentle with the instruments than any other gynecologist I've seen. I appreciated seeing a doctor who didn't work on my body like I was on an assembly line. OH, and get this ladies!! The lap cover was NOT made from that cheesy paper...It was a soft, pressed, white cotton sheet!! Real fabric.... Ah-Mazing!! I tell ya, it's the small things in life that really make me happy!! :)

We HEARD our baby's heartbeat for the very first time. WHOOP, WHOOP, WHOOP, WHOOP, WHOOP!!! It was a breathtaking sound. And our fetal heart rate was 162 BPM! Fast and strong...just like the baby itself!! We have a VERY Bouncy Bun in the Oven!! This baby was in constant motion for the entire u/s. I mean spinning, kicking, waving and bobbing so much that getting a picture was very difficult! Baby also had its legs crossed so no guesses on gender yet. We'll have to wait until week 19 when we have our next ultrasound scheduled. Oh well! Dr. F was able to count all 10 fingers as they waved around. And he said that the spine looked great with almost no fluid around it which means that there's a very low risk for downs syndrome. The baby's stomach was full of liquid so that indicates baby is swallowing and that the brain is functioning as it should be at this point. He did some other measurements of the femur, skull, abdomen, etc as best he could with all the movement and kept using beautiful words like, "great" and "perfect." Music to my ears after the weeks of nervous thoughts. At one point when Dr. F got a good view of some fingers he even said, " cute!" That made me feel so good that a doctor could allow himself to use a word like that to describe MY baby. We've made it to the second trimester and have a great bill of health!! I couldn't be more pleased with this news!

Now for the sour part...We had a snow storm hit yesterday morning and it lasted throughout the day so Dr. F had to close his office. Today he tried to fit all of yesterday's cancelled appointments in with his regularly scheduled appts. Yay for us! We waited over an hour just to be called back and once we were shown to the exam room...yup, you guessed it....more waiting. (This time with no you can see why I appreciated that real cotton cloth so much!!) We were there for OVER TWO FULL HOURS in total when we were told this appointment would last no longer than 45 minutes! It really wasn't that awful since we had no where we had to be, but what made it seem like it took forever was how EAGER I was to see my baby after all these weeks. I know weather can't be helped so we tried to be patient and definitely didn't complain.

The second thing is definitely a little more sour!! Dr. F told us that he was recording the entire sonogram with sound and all. We were SO EXCITED about it!! When we got home we instantly put the DVD in the machine and...Nothing. My husband then tried it on his laptop then mine, and still nothing. It turns out that there were no files recorded. I called their office to see if maybe he gave us the wrong DVD or they had another copy or something, but of course, no, it's gone forever. Actually it never was...apparently he didn't hit record properly. I'm so disapointed. It would have been a really great thing to show our baby some day when he or she is older...and it would have been fun to upload here on my blog. Oh well...shit happens! At least my baby is healthy...that is all the really matters. Since baby was moving so much, and he thought it was being recorded there wasn't much emphasis put on our still photos so that's why they are not the best. Here is our little Skeletar Alien:

3D image

When we go back in 5 weeks they have promised to do another full DVD recording for us. I'm sure that the new one one will be even better since the baby will be that much more mature. Next time I will be sure to ask, "Are you SURE that its recording?!?!"

Summary: Perfect fetal heartbeat, 10 fingers, lots of movement, a really nice doctor, and cotton was a very good day, DVD or not!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

CAN'T WAIT for my First OB Appt. Tomorrow!!

This wait has been really tough on me...very similar to the anxiety of my 2WW, but way LONGER! It's been one month...4 WEEKS...since we were released from the RE. I know, I know, that's only 2 weeks longer than the 2WW, but it feels like it's been 2 months or longer!

I realize that I'd better get used to this kind of wait since 4 weeks is the standard time between all my upcoming OB appointments until my third trimester. It's just that the last time we saw our baby he/she was only 10 weeks (1st trimester) and now I'm 14 weeks (2nd trimester). With all the horror stories out there about miscarriage in the first trimester I felt a great sigh of relief when we crossed over to the second trimester, but I have yet to have a doctor confirm that our baby is still doing great. I have had very minimal symptoms throughout my whole pregnancy thus far so I've had nothing physical to really go by. And not to mention that symptoms are suppose to ease in the second trimester so how would I know either way?

I don't mean to be projecting worry or fear that something is actually wrong with my baby or my pregnancy, because in my heart I believe that he or she is doing great. And I've had no spotting or pain or anything to make me worry, and my belly is growing. It's just that I love my baby so much already and I know how hard it was to get here, so trusting my heart or my belly isn't enough for me to be able to relax. I am so eager to SEE our little Pea again on the u/s screen. I just want to hear my doctor say, "All is well." I cannot wait to see all the changes that have happened to our growing little miracle. I am still dying to HEAR the heartbeat since our RE never turned on the sound. I'm anxious to know what the heartbeat actually is since we were never given an exact figure from our out IVF doc. He just said, "It's somewhere b/w 120 and 160." Great, huh?

I selected the OB I'm seeing based on friend recommendations and internet ratings....which were both great! He is supposed to have excellent bedside manner and is known for taking his time and never making patients feel rushed. Also he's in practice by himself so I will always be seeing him and not one of his partners. I really hope that he'll take his time with us tomorrow so that I can get a GOOD look at my growing fetus. My past ultrasounds went by so fast they felt like a blur.

I'll post the picture(s) and an update as soon as can!

Do any of you have any recommendations of specific questions I should ask or requests I could make? I have a list of the "basic" inquiries that I'd assume most people will ask, but I'm wondering if any of you might think of something that I'm not. Thanks! :)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Blogger Award!!

Many thanks to Sabine at A Land Far Away for this sweet award!! She's in the depths of TTC...please stop by and give her some support if you have a moment!!

Seven (interesting) facts about me:

1. I grew up on a horse farm and could "ride" practically before I could walk. Here is a picture to prove it...

2. My Aunt, Dellie, gave me this chair for Christmas when I was 5 or 6 and I still have it, and it's in great shape. I look forward to putting it in our baby's room.

3. In high school I was captain and goal-keeper for the women's varsity soccer team during the fall and I cheerleaded for the men's basketball team during the winter. It surprised a lot of people that I didn't play for the women's basketball team. I liked to be tough one season and wear girly skirts the next! :)

(Yes, our cheerleading unifroms were hanus and competely butt ugly!)

4. I once got my hair braided into corn-rows in the Bahamas...Those tight braids HURT so much that I have sworn to never again wear my hair like that... and I have a new found respect for those who can.

5. Only 2 short weeks after my huband and I started dating we went to the Kentucky Derby in a limo with a group of friends. It was SO MUCH fun. We sat on a blanket in the infield...hence the casual attire. It would've been fun to wear a big fancy hat....maybe some other year. (Yes, I'm wearing a great big belt buckel in a Limousine. I was sporting the "country club meets country girl" look. HA!)

6. My sister and I have the same birthday...November 3rd....yet we are 4 years apart in age. (She's older)

7. I designed and built a website for my dad. He is a painter and this is one of the paintings he has done for me and Ben. It is a portrait of our Fox Hound, Libby. Please visit our website to see more of his paintings if you are interested.

I nominate the following bloggers to recieve this award:

Brooke: scifibaby

I WISH I could nominate more of you, but I'm follwing the rules...

So here's what you need to do:
  • Thank the person who nominated you and copy the award in your blog
  • Link the person who nominated you for this award
  • Share seven interesting things about yourself
  • Nominate seven fellow bloggers and add the links to their blogs

Monday, February 1, 2010

12 Weeks 5 Days Update

  • OBGYN: My first OB appt is still not until Feb 10th! I last saw my RE on Jan this wait is getting tough!! At my last u/s my baby was 10 weeks and at the next u/s he or she will be 14 weeks!! I can't wait to see how much The Pea has changed and we hope to learn the gender at that point if baby is in the right position! Fingers crossed!!

  • Nursery: Ben and I got started thinking about baby furniture this past weekend. It was really fun!! We rearranged our bedroom since we plan on keeping our baby in our room with is for the first several months. In fact, we don't plan on setting up a nursery at all in our current house since we expect that Ben will be relocated cross country for his job shortly after the birth. When we get to our new house, our baby will be about 6 months old so that's when we'll decorate a permanent nursery. Not to mention in the current house the extra bedrooms are kinda far down the hallway and I know I wouldn't be comfortable leaving my baby that far away from me especially in the beginning. Also I plan on breastfeeding, so having baby in our room will be the most convenient for all! We ordered the following furniture:

  • Arm's Reach Co-Sleeper that fits right up against my bed to make midnight feedings easier and to be able to check in on baby frequently. It will hold up to 30 lbs so it's bigger and will last longer than a typical bassinet. (This also turns into a pack'n play for later on when baby is larger.) We'll worry about getting a crib later on down the road closer to our move.
  • Glider Chair & Ottoman will be great for nursing and rocking baby to sleep. We also like that it looks like a normal piece of furniture so we can keep it around and it isn't so obvious that it's a nursery glider.

  • Changing table will be the next thing to pick out, but we haven't found one that we love yet. I'll post pics of our bedroom/baby room when the furniture arrives and we get it all set up. I know some might think we're getting started way too early, but I don't care what anyone thinks! We're so excited that we're finally expecting that we can't help it! I'm sure we'll have everything all done and ready by the end of my second trimester. That's OK with me since my third trimester will be during the HOT summer months so I'll spend my free time lounging in a cool swimming pool with my big belly instead of running around to every baby store in town. :)

  • My symptoms are almost non existent. I feel great all the time. I'm just way more hungry and I crave really healthy food all the time. Vegetables, fruit, milk and more fruit!! On Saturday night at about 3:40 AM I was tossing and turning and thinking about cereal ...what else is new...and I didn't realize it but Ben was awake. Out of no where he said, "if you want to go downstairs to have a bowl of Cheerios, I'll come with you." I jumped to my feet and said, "awesome...lets go!!" We sat in the dark on the couch eating a couple bowls together in our PJ's while watching Keeping Up With The Kard.ashians since that was the only thing on at that hour. It was my favorite part of the weekend. I love my husband and I LOVE being pregnant!!! :)